Learning to live Authentically

Saturday, February 06, 2010

Learning to live Authentically
Authenticity frustratingly emerges for me like the last drop of molasses in the jar because it is the human characteristic that we are least capable of claiming. We cannot live authentically until, through gut-wrenching trial and error, we define our other selves that architecturally contribute to building a true self. I have great admiration for young persons who through whatever life events, wisdom, intellect or genetic code are able to know themselves at an early age. For me, this self-knowledge came from years lived. Sometimes I'm very hard on myself about having a winding career path thinking I could have achieved so much more had I settled on one occupation early on and stayed with it. Sometimes I'm very hard on myself about have a winding marital path thinking there is such nobility in being married thirty, forty, fifty years or ore to the same person. I ease up on myself only by acknowledging that finding myself, esteeming myself and living authentically became possible only through trial and error for me. I rest comfortably with who I am now because I figured it out the hard way.

updated: 6 years ago


The "martial path."Wednesday, January 5th 2011 2:19PM

I was tickled by your misspelling (or at least I think that it was) of your winding your way through the marital thicket.  It is appropriate that I read this on the anniversary of your most recent (and lasting) relationship.  Back in the late 1950's, all Phillips University students were required to take a course in personal health.  It was taught by one Mary Anne Blakey (or maybe it was Blakely) who was an ancient (at least so it seemed to us young whippersnappers) "maiden lady."  When we got to the chapters dealing with physical intimacy and sexual relations, particularly the subject of premarital sex, she advised us to "read that on your own."  She referred to it as "premartial sex" and pronounced it that way, too.    Bill.  

Yikes, I must have been drunk or half asleep on that posting! That wasn't the only misspelling and some of the sentence structure wasn't so great either! Ahhh, such is the life of a blogger.

But your story reminded me of my college professor who taught the entire chapter on premarital sex calling "acting ugly!"

AuthenticitySaturday, February 20th 2010 12:48PM

I think that I took a different martial path than you!  I joined the US Navy BEFORE I chose to marry Sue Hope Johnson.  Was it authentic?  I think so.  If we had been married earlier (we had been engaged some three years earlier, but broke it off), I wouldn't have known there was any other route than secondary school, university, graduate school, then marriage.  We probably would have been "caught" by the military draft because of the Vietnam war.  I might have survived that.  I might not have made the choice to stay married to Sue and remained in the Navy.  

All these are "what ifs."  Instead, I have been married to the most beautiful and patient woman I know, almost 47 years.  I can count on one hand the times that I have thought of leaving her.  Luckily, sanity prevailed and I was able to go on.  My only wish is that people could know that degree of "who am I" a bit earlier, so that they could relish each day.

Your wish is my wish. I hope my memoir leads even one person further down that road of authenticity.